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Pennsylvania ups reward for dogfighting tips

Authorities in Pennsylvania are offering up to $5,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of anyone involved in dogfighting.

The reward was announced Monday in Philadelphia by Attorney General Tom Corbett and The Humane Society of the United States. About 40,000 people are believed to be involved in dogfighting across the country, Corbett said.

The reward also applies to cockfighting.

The Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (PSPCA) says it has received more than 400 complaints about dogfighting in the first six months of this year –  up from 245 complaints during all of 2008.

The announcement came the morning after convicted dogfighter Michael Vick played in his first regular season game as a Philadelphia Eagle.

The Humane Society’s reward program, funded by a private endowment, has been in place at the national level for two years and has paid out nearly $160,000 to more than 50 tipsters. Corbett is the 19th attorney general in the country to partner with the program, and his support sends a strong message throughout the state that dogfighting will not be tolerated, an HSUS officials said.

The HSUS operates a nationwide dogfighting tip line (1-877-TIP-HSUS).

Both dogfighting and watching it are felonies in Pennsylvania, punishable by up to seven years in prison and a $15,000 fine. Corbett said that only eight states have more stringent dogfighting laws than Pennsylvania’s, the Philadelphia Daily News reported.

The reward is funded through a grant from the Holland M. Ware Charitable Foundation.

Comments

Comment from Anne’n'Spencer
Time September 30, 2009 at 2:11 pm

I’m hoping that the increase in reports is due to increased awareness rather than more dog fights.

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